AUSTIN (KXAN) - The Formula One racetrack takes shape more each day east of Austin near Elroy. Race officials have posted race times on the F1 website, and race fans can plan on a full weekend of events come November.
Two 90-minute practice runs are set for the 5.5 kilometer (3.4155 miles) track on Friday, Nov. 16 -- one at 10 a.m. and the other at 2 p.m.
Saturday, Nov. 17, drivers have another opportunity to run practice laps at 10 a.m., followed by the first-ever qualifying race at the Circuit of the Americas track at 3 p.m. Official race time on Sunday is also 3 p.m.
According to information published on Autosport.com , the race track itself looks to be on target for completion in August. Work is being done on the site six days a week as the grandstands take shape and officials see their dream of a Grand Prix race in Austin get closer to reality.
The track is designed to have 133 feet of elevation change and 20 turns. The F1 website states that the master plan features additional visitor attractions, including a proposed driving/riding experience and seminar building, motorsports driving club, kart track and welcome center.
Prices for the U.S. race have not been posted. However, weekend ticket packages in Canada, for example, range from a low of $152 for a three-day general admission pass to a high of $657 each for prime three-day grandstand tickets. Lower-priced three-day grandstand tickets sell for $329. A single Saturday race ticket in Canada sells for $84 and Sunday's price is $115. Children's race tickets in Canada sell for just 99 cents for a general admission weekend pass. Prices are based on current conversion rates.
As many as 120,000 people are expected to watch 12 race teams compete, including:
- Red Bull Racing, U.K. -- since 2005; holds 2 world championships
- Vodafone McLaren Mercedes, U.K. -- since 1966; holds 8 world championships
- Scuderia Ferrari, Italy -- since 1950; holds 16 world championships
- Mercedes AMG Petronas F1 Team, U.K. -- since 2010
- Lotus F1 Team, U.K. -- since 1977; holds 2 world championships
- Sahara Force India F1 Team, U.K. -- since 2008
- Sauber F1 Team, Switzerland -- since 1993
- Scuderia Toro Rosso, Italy -- since 1996
- Williams, U.K. -- since 1975; holds 9 world championships
- Team Caterham, U.K. -- since 2010
- HRT F1 Team, Spain -- since 2010
- Marussia F1 Team, U.K. -- since 2010
For those who want to experience racing right on their computer desktops or mobile phones, F1's official race website offers interactive "live timing." That is, until the COA track opens in Austin and fans can experience the action in person.
Light snow flurries were reported early Saturday just north of the KXAN viewing area. Sub-freezing temperatures along with a slight chance of light snow, sleet and freezing rain will continue through Sunday morning.
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Sub-freezing temperatures and an approaching upper level disturbance could combine to produce some patchy freezing drizzle or sleet Saturday and early Sunday morning.